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Have you ever wondered what your auto-mechanic does in their spare time? You probably wouldn’t think they’re at home creating cute, cuddly plush toys for kids. That’s exactly what my guest,Nikki who runs the Etsy shop Stitch and Stuffed enjoys doing when she’s not turning the wrenches in the garage.
Nikki is a unique lady – not only is she an Automotive Technician by day, but by night she’s a “plushy artist.”
She’s been a crafter for most of her life, starting as a young girl hand-sewing pencil-toppers for her and her friends’ pencils in school. She took her love of sewing one step further as she got older and decided to invest in a sewing machine.
Nikki says she taught herself how to use the sewing machine and hasn’t looked back since! While she’s no longer creating cute shirts for the tops of her pencils, her skill has evolved to creating plush toys for children of all ages.
Where does she get her inspiration? From the kids, themselves!
I love how creative children are ~ Nikki
Nikki opened her Etsy shop about a year and a half ago. Currently selling handmade plush toys, she says a lot of the orders she fills comes from parents of children with big ideas for characters. Parents often send her drawings and sketches of animals that their children have created and she brings them to life through her sewing skills.
On this week’s episode, Nikki shares her story about how she discovered Etsy, why she decided to “jump in head first” despite people telling her that the site was overcrowded, and what her long-term business goals are for Stitch and Stuffed.
We also talk about her pricing model, buying materials at wholesale cost, and how she promotes her shop on Facebook and Instagram. We also get her perspective on posting promotional advertisements in the Etsy forums and why she advises against it.
Stitch and Stuffed – Topics Discussed
- How Nikki manages her time running her shop while working full-time.
- Her ideas for launching DIY kits for kids.
- The technical similarities she sees between her full-time job and her Etsy business.
- Attending wholesale vendor shows to connect with wholesalers.
- How her marketing and promotional tactics have evolved over the last year.
- How she uses Instagram and hashtags to promote her business.
- Learning the hard way – fulfilling international orders and accurately gauging shipping fees.
- What she looks forward to by attending the Craftcation Conference in April.
Stitch and Stuffed – Resources Mentioned
Stitch and Stuffed – Etsy Shop Shout Outs
Country Craftin’ Corner – run by Nikki’s friend Amber where she sells beautifully created jewelry, keychains, and hand-stamped items!
Best Ways to Reach Nikki
- Etsy Shop: Stitch and Stuffed
- Social Media: Facebook | Instagram
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